MEDIA
05/12/2010 05:12 am ET Updated May 25, 2011

TIME Promotes Nancy Gibbs, Michael Elliott To Top Ranks

TIME magazine has elevated two of its longstanding employees to its top ranks.

International Editor Michael Elliott has been named deputy managing editor, and prolific cover story writer Nancy Gibbs has been named executive editor.

"From writing to editing to conceiving covers, Mike is a world-class journalist and the consummate magazine professional, and to have his voice and experience in the domestic magazine will be enormously valuable," managing editor Rick Stengel said in a memo to staff Friday morning.

"No one personifies TIME more than Nancy Gibbs," Stengel also said. "As a journalist, Nancy is timely and timeless: she has been the lead writer on almost every major news event from Oklahoma City to Hurricane Katrina to the drama of presidential election nights, but she is also the regular author of essays that deal with the most enduring of values and ideas--essays that are routinely anthologized. Her writing is a gift, and her editing is a gift to other writers."

In addition to the promotions, TIME is losing deputy managing editor Romesh Ratnesar, widely seen — along with Josh Tyrangiel, who recently left the magazine to helm Bloomberg BusinessWeek — as a potential successor to Stengel. Ratnesar will remain a special contributing editor to the magazine.

The New York Post's Keith Kelly writes that "the promotions appeared to be a move away from the young turks -- Tyrangiel and Ratnesar were both in their 30s -- in favor of grown-ups who rose through the ranks."

"It's a win, win, win, situation," Stengel told Kelly. "I'm getting the talent of Romesh as a writer and promoting two people, one of whom could be the face of the magazine in the future."

Full memo from John Huey and Rick Stengel below:

To: Time Inc. Employees

From: John Huey and Richard Stengel

Re: Staff Announcement

On the recommendation of Rick Stengel, I am very pleased to announce that Michael Elliott is the new deputy managing editor of TIME and Nancy Gibbs is TIME's new executive editor. I have long admired Michael's range of skills which run broad and deep, and Nancy, as we all know, is the very embodiment of the TIME brand. It is great to have her take a senior role in TIME's management team. But I will defer to Rick to tell the story:

Mike Elliott is already number two on the masthead as international editor, but he is now going to play a much larger role on the domestic magazine and be my day-to-day deputy. Mike has served in his present capacity since 2005, when he was based in Hong Kong before I asked him to come back to the U.S. in 2006. (I had nothing to do with him becoming a U.S. citizen that year, though). In addition to his enormous experience in international coverage, Mike first came to the U.S. as a journalist in 1986 for The Economist to cover American politics and economics. Later, he became their Washington bureau chief and the first author of the magazine's Lexington column about Washington politics. Mike also served as diplomatic editor of Newsweek and editor of Newsweek International. From writing to editing to conceiving covers, Mike is a world-class journalist and the consummate magazine professional, and to have his voice and experience in the domestic magazine will be enormously valuable.

No one personifies TIME more than Nancy Gibbs. From her matchless prose (Politico called her "the poet laureate of presidents") to her superb ideas to her unique understanding of our readers, she has more than anyone else created the modern DNA of TIME. Nancy has written more cover stories than anyone in TIME history, a truly remarkable accomplishment and a record that will certainly never be broken. Rather than recite her greatest hits (which are too numerous to mention), I'll mention only one, her moving and unforgettable essay in the special black-bordered 9/11 issue which won the National Magazine Award that year. As a journalist, Nancy is timely and timeless: she has been the lead writer on almost every major news event from Oklahoma City to Hurricane Katrina to the drama of presidential election nights, but she is also the regular author of essays that deal with the most enduring of values and ideas--essays that are routinely anthologized. Her writing is a gift, and her editing is a gift to other writers. Now, Nancy is taking a managerial role in which she will be focused on staff development, generating ideas and covers, editing and assigning stories--and helping guide TIME into the future. There's no one better to do that than Nancy Gibbs.

Congratulations to Mike and Nancy.

J.H. R.S.